Past blog posts for your reading pleasure.
San Dimas Chamber of Commerce provides internships to former foster youth at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services.
May is Foster Care Awareness Month, and our theme for the observance is “It Takes a Village.” In this post, we talked to Dan about his and his wife’s experiences as foster/adoptive parents.
Meet Domeo, newest intern at Dave and Maggie's Café!
Hop Skip Drive, helping youth in foster care and families across the nation.
May is National Mental Health Month. Why should that be important to you?
National Mental Health Month aims to increase the awareness and understanding of mental health throughout the United States. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, in the U.S. more than 44 million people - one in six adults - suffer from mental illness.
Mo Williams, BUSD shares insights into the village supporting youth in foster care.
May is National Foster Care Awareness Month (NFCAM), a time dedicated to raising awareness for all the children and youth in foster care. It is also when we honor the foster parents, families, volunteers, child welfare professionals, and members of the community who have a role in supporting youth who experience foster care!
Sadie looks forward to a teaching career, and eventually, a family of her own. To both, she will bring to bear not only a fine education, but perspective on life shaped by her experiences as a former foster child who is a success story.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, to honor this occasion we have asked Courtney O’Steen, a child abuse survivor, and Mrs. California 2019 to share a few words with our readers.
Thank you to each of the 539 community members who came out to the David & Margaret 44th Annual Easter Egg Hunt. It was such a fun and joyful day! There were balloon twisters, face painters, easter egg dyeing, lots of games, live music, photo booths, and Easter Egg Hunt, and of course a visit from the one and only Easter Bunny.
Since the café opened in 2017, we’ve been making changes to meet the demands of our customers and to give interns more valuable work experience. Recent improvements to the café include it opening earlier, offering Wi-Fi, and wonderful espresso drinks are now available, hot or cold. The décor is being brightened up, and watch for new menu items beginning in May!
5 Questions: An Interview with Marlyn Medina, social worker, Transitional Housing Programs
David & Margaret is fortunate to have close to 200 volunteers annually who donated almost 9,000 hours of volunteers service in 2018!
On a recent Thursday afternoon, David & Margaret Youth and Family Services welcomed a very special group of forty plus guests to our volunteer recognition event at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Gardens.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services' 44th Annual Easter Egg Hunt - and our first-ever La Verne Business Scavenger Hunt - has something for everyone in the family!
Amaryllis Watkins has seen David & Margaret from every angle: placement worker, mentor, volunteer and now board member.
Inside look at Sabina Sullivan!
An interview with Lisa Pittman!
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services is grateful for the women who work here to help provide for and nurture the future women history makers each and every day! Thank you Shelia, Noemy, Linda and all the women of David & Margaret for all you do to Renew Hope and Inspire Change.
The Joan Macy School Award Ceremony Banquet was held recently. It was a full room overflowing with love and laughter. Friends and families enjoyed an Italian dinner and chocolate strawberry cake. Teachers shared meaningful stories honoring the students’ hard work, dedications, and improvements. Director Charles Rich started off the ceremony congratulating all the students and teachers on their collective efforts. Many students received awards but most notable were Andre, Carlotta, and David & Margaret resident Leilani. It was inspiring and emotional listening to their teachers present the awards.
Former foster youth Joy Clarke’s recent graduation from Cal Poly Pomona is a testament to her laser-sharp focus on her future.
Don’t try this at home. I am fifty years old, and I have been dealing with this disorder on and off for 38 years. You do not want this. You do not want the secrecy, the self-loathing, the selfishness, the obsessive thoughts, the destructive feelings. You do not want the fear of a ruptured esophagus or eroded teeth or an erratic heartbeat. You do not want to feel death is better than life.
Throughout history, African Americans have been left out of the narrative. Stories had been told without all the leading characters. African American History Month began as a way to correct that injustice; a way to remember influential people and events in the history of the African Diaspora.
Meet Linda, and find out about her fascinating international background!
Maria was born into the foster system, living with a variety of foster families and attending many schools. “My experience? It was good, all my social workers were nice, friendly...
A local youth shares her experience regarding Teen Domestic Violence. "When I was 15 I met a boy online. He went to my school - so I knew he was safe to talk to. Online predators are all adults, right?"
David & Margaret receives three three-year CARF accreditations for foster care programs
Mr. and Mrs. Greenblatt have been active foster parents with David & Margaret for the last ten years. They have opened their home and heart to many foster children over the years.
Recent studies have shown how volunteering with people or a cause you care about can actually mitigate depression and anxiety issues. Here's how.
Meet 19-year-old Luis Torres and you can feel energy radiating from him like heat. He seems excited about pretty much everything, even leaving his apartment at 5 a.m. to get to his new job at the San Gabriel Valley Conservation Corps in Pomona.
Because of the amazing generosity of donors, gifts were provided to over 250 David & Margaret youth this year!
Do you know how to identify and help a possible victim?
Are you looking to use your skills, passion and expertise to make a difference in our community?
David and Margaret is proud to host a Blood Drive with The American Red Cross January 9th from Noon - 6pm on our main campus located at 1350 Third Street La Verne, CA 91750. Please join us in saving lives.
Maintenance Manager Mark Lovelis is a musician at heart.
Social work interns gain valuable experience at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services
What is your most memorable positive experience? Listening to residents’ success stories and how much they appreciated the staff and services here.
I served as a guide to the other young women living on campus. I showed others to trust in the process. To soak in all that is being offered. The years will go by quickly; embrace the blessing. It was so funny, when I arrived I hated it so much, but when it was time to leave I cried.
However YOU celebrate in December – whether it’s Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus, or just reveling in another beautiful month in Southern California – we wish our friends, supporters, donors and the public the very best in the coming new year!
NOMADS donate their valuable time and talent to organizations like David & Margaret Youth and Family Services
David & Margaret's volunteer Santa, Jack Wear, could pass as the real thing ... or is he?
David & Margaret has received a $3,000 grant from the Ecolab Foundation, to promote self-sufficiency and employment for youth ages 18-24 in Los Angeles County who are leaving or transitioning out of foster care.
Volunteers from Starbucks, J.C.Pennys, Foothills Fit4Mom, Cub Scouts pack 13, David & Margaret Board Members, and more came out today to help spread some holiday cheer for the youth and families of David & Margaret. It was a fun and productive day.
I recall a cousin saying what a wonderful thing we did by adopting. In truth, it was her birth Mother who did a wonderful thing out of love for her, so baby Kimberly could have a better life than she could provide.
November is National Adoption month. As an adoptive parent, I am frequently called upon to be an adoption educator. I share resources and offer counsel to prospective adoptive families.
One day last month I received a voicemail, when I called back it was a conversation that changed our lives!
That may seem an extreme statement, but it is true - this one call changed our lives. It seems my daughter had a new bio-half sibling in foster care and they wanted to know if I was interested in adopting her!?!!
The Patick family’s adoption story started with American Idol and a daughter who wanted to help kids without families.
Through fost-adoption, a night counselor at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services becomes parent to four children.
Adopting a child through foster care is not an easy process. It is complicated and frustrating and a wonderful life changing experience. This post shares the story of a single working mother who created her family through the fost-adopt process. If you are interested in learning more about fostering or adopting please go to our website http://bit.ly/DMYFSFoster or call 1-800-4-foster
A couple builds their family through fost-adoption.
Congratulations to David & Margaret staff member Sylvia Valenzuela recipient of the 2018 Sunair Children's Foundation La Rocca Award!
What happens when your child is a adopted, and adopted from foster care, without a clear history of their past? They have no photos, no memorabilia, and no family stories to share. They don’t have red hair like grandma Pat or a wiry frame like papa Joe. Often, we do not know about their past or even if they have bio siblings. They are our child, a very important part of our family tree, but they are an equally important part of another family tree - one we don’t know much about. It is complicated, and it is important to represent the whole of who they are. A single tree is not enough.
In recognition of November as National Adoption Awareness Month, the agency is pleased to announce that beginning January 2019, employees who are legally adoptive parents will henceforth receive an “adoption day” anniversary holiday, to celebrate with their family.
Meet Sergio Castaneda, counselor supervisor, Residential Program!
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services Receives $20,000 Grant from the CLA Foundation to benefit its Youth Workforce Training Program for youth aging out of foster care
A former youth in the Residential Program recounts the profound impact that David & Margaret had on her life.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services is pleased to partner with the Los Angeles County Library to host activities every Monday.
Thank you to each and every person who made the 11th annual “Growing Together” Gala a smashing success.
The Gratitude Award honors a foster parent, donor, volunteer, or other supporter of David & Margaret Youth and Family Services for their outstanding efforts on behalf of the agency and the youth and families served. This is the inaugural year of the Gratitude Award, and it could not go to a more deserving individual than Reginald Magee.
The Henry Kuns Award recognizes a youth aging out of foster care for their accomplishments on the path to independent living. This is the inaugural year of the Henry Kuns Award, and we are thrilled that Karina Barrios is the first recipient.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services is proud to have the support of Last Name Brewing who will be providing complimentary tastings of their fine craft beers at our Growing Together gala on Sat., Sept. 15. They.
Today a few David & Margaret Staff, Board Members and volunteers headed out to Whittier Narrows Park to participate in Supervisor Hilda Solis’ 3D Youth Jam. The three D’s stand for Determination, Dedication and Drive, and the event was geared towards resources for foster youth in our parks and in our community.
Joan Macy School has been back in session for less than a month, but they are already having fun, exploring the world, and learning. While the Joan Macy teachers are introducing new concepts and skills throughout the academic year, they also manage to make sure the students have fun along the way.
It is back to school time for Claremont Graduate University and Pomona College and David & Margaret is grateful to be included in their programs for new and returning students. Over the past week several colleges have asked their students to engage in the community and to experience the power of volunteering.
On Saturday August 25, 2018 David & Margaret welcomed over a dozen Freshman from the University of La Verne. The students were participating in the University of La Verne Freshman La Verne Experience (FLEX).
Fine wines donated by Jerry D. Mead's New World International Wine Competition have long been a tradition at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services' annual gala dinner.
Rayann is 24 years old, lives in her own apartment, has her own car, and has more than 3 months of expenses in her savings account. She works two jobs to make sure it stays that way. Pretty impressive, but its even more impressive when you learn more about her.
The Growing Together Gala committee invites you to join us at 5:30p on September 15th, at the Glendora Country Club where we will be celebrating foster youth and foster families while raising critical funds for needed programs and services.
The drop-in center will offer many services for youth including healthy meals and snacks, youth activities and special events, support services, and linkages to housing resources, mental health services and the College & Career Program.
Claudia has been with Joan Macy School at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services for 13 years. “I love the staff and students, and honestly think you have to have a huge heart to work here, because you always want to help the girls,” she says. “It’s so gratifying.”
Joel at the age of twenty has been in foster care for over half of his life. He has lived in eight group homes and with three different foster families. But this is not who Joel is. Joel is college student, who is ready to embrace his future.
Summer Service Day was a huge success thanks to the many volunteers whose sweat equity is a critical part of the equation that makes a difference in the lives of the youth, young adults and families served at David & Margaret.
We are honored and humbled by what this amazing JMS graduate has accomplished, we are so pleased to share her success stories with you. Congratulations Eva we look forward to seeing all the great things you accomplish in the future.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services in La Verne is pleased to announce that it has received a $20,000 grant from Inland Empire United Way.
Joan Macy School and David & Margaret Youth and Family Services host a school banquet celebration after each completed school semester to recognize the students for their growth and achievements. The awards were most recently held on Tuesday July 24, 2018 at the David & Margaret dining hall.
Congratulations to Catherine Rowlee 2018 Joan Macy School Teacher of the Year. Thank you to the La Verne Chamber of Commerce for honoring our teachers.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services is thrilled to be partnering with Raise A Child. Since May of 2018, David & Margaret’s Foster Family and Adoption Program has been partnering with RaiseAChild to do a one of the happiest things in the world - create families!
Residents at David & Margaret Youth and Family Services have a lot of fun during summer. We're always looking to add to their fun with donations of equipment and tickets, as well as volunteers with special recreational skills.
I love representing David & Margaret in the community. On the agency’s behalf, I’m in the La Verne Chamber of Commerce (starting my sixth year on the board of directors and as an ambassador), the Claremont Chamber of Commerce (as an ambassador), the San Dimas Chamber of Commerce (we’re a new member there), and Claremont Sunrise Rotary (board of directors again!)
Congratulations Emily, we look forward to seeing all the great things you accomplish in the future.
It goes without saying, but to be clear: We are against families being torn apart. Families need access to resources and support services that will provide them the opportunity to be together and grow together. Whatever the reasons that lead a family to us, we are here to renew hope and help inspire within them a greater strength to accomplish what will lead them to a better future.
My takeaway from the research was that children raised by gay parents grew up to be as well-adjusted as their peers raised by heterosexual parents. If anything, growing up in a non-traditional family helped them develop empathy, a trait we place a high value on in adults. These findings put my mind at ease, freeing me to imagine a future as an out man that would someday become a father.
Ever wonder what the banners in front of David & Margaret's residential cottages mean? According to Beverly Kottkamp, Intervention Office Manager and a 27-year employee of David & Margaret, the emblems were chosen by the case manager for each house.
“I found out about David & Margaret years ago through a former board member,” says Darcy Coulter, “when the focus was mostly on young girls in foster care. My own two daughters are so fortunate, so I wanted to get involved.” Not only did she get involved, she has been one of the 108-year-old agency’s most outspoken advocates for the past seven years.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services in La Verne is pleased to announce the newest additions to its 16-member Board of Directors. They bring a wealth of experience, vision, and passion to the 108-year-old social service agency.
In honor of Pride month we are happy to share one of our favorite web-series - The F word. The F word series reveals the story of one queer couple adopting from foster care. We hope you watch it and enjoy it as much as we did.
Congratulations to Joan Macy School Class of 2018!
Charles has been with David & Margaret since July 2017 as the manager of Dave & Maggie's Cafe.
If you try to live altruistically, then combating your own loneliness can play a vital role in how you serve others. Here’s how to overcome loneliness in everyday life.
Adriana de la O just fine, is being named one of the honorees at Tri-City Mental Health’s TAY (transitional age youth) Community Agency and Staff Recognition Luncheon on Tuesday, June 26.
National Mental Health Month aims to increase the awareness and understanding of mental health throughout the United States. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, in the U.S. more than 44 million people - one in six adults - suffer from mental illness. Further, more than one in five youth aged 13 to 18 is likely to have experienced a mental disorder with severe impairment at some point.
How can you continue to honor and respect the service men and women dedicated to protecting this nation? Here are six ways to show your support this Memorial Day.
If you are willing, able, and have the resources to open your home, could qualify to become a foster parent (also called a resource parent). David & Margaret Youth and Family Services has a foster care and adoption agency, and we welcome all singles and couples, and we are an open and affirming agency.
Mentoring a child helps them to see unlimited possibilities for the future, learn something new and most importantly, realize that somebody cares about them.
In this day and age, who doesn't want to be a superhero, or have one as a best friend? David & Margaret Youth and Family Services staff got to live out their super fantasies on Wednesday, May 16, at the Annual Employee Picnic, held on the agency's grounds. Then they returned to their normal disguises as mild-mannered social workers, therapists, and others who help the children and families the agency serves. Up, up, and away!
In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, David & Margaret Youth and Family Services is spotlighting a few of our hard-working front-line mental health professionals. First up: meet Jackie Bustos, case manager.
May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, and mental illness take many forms; for example, depression, bipolar disease, or addiction. Addiction has been garnering a lot of attention recently, and no wonder: A 2017 survey by the National Institute on Drug Abuse found that one in 10 Americans – about 24 million people – have an addiction issue.
David & Margaret Youth and Family Services was well represented at the Inland Empire CicLAvia event on Sunday, April 22. Board members and staff, along with volunteers, turned out to cheer on the crowd, help with traffic control at our appointed intersection of Bonita and Wheeler Avenues, and get the word out about our agency! We had a great time - did you?